(1310-12-12) Late for a Very Important Date
Summary: Symon and Étienne have missed their carriage to the City of Elua, so set out at the crack of dawn on fast horses.
RL Date: 12/12/18
Related: Swan Dive.
symon etienne 

Symon's Rooms at Les Tanières

<Roomdesc>


Étienne arrives at the crack of dawn with his saddle bags packed. He is in his sturdy, non-descript travel clothes with his hair tied back in a simple leather thong. He looks nervous and a tad embarrassed, though he does not fidget, the habit of stillness having been drilled into him young.

Symon is an absolute mess. Robert admits Etienne while Symon is calling from the back of the flat, "Robert, did you pack my shoes?" It appears that Robert did pack the shoes.

Étienne gives Robert a very apologetic smile and a mouthed 'Sorry.' He strides right through to Symon, setting his saddle bags down casually. A bit of his mischief is back in his grin, "Days late and still not ready." His tone is warmly amused and has no sting in it. "Do you need help, Symon?" Not sweet, but a start.

"No, no," Symon calls. Then he comes out. "Robert," he says, "Everything on the b-bed simply m…must be packed. You'll have to find a w…way." Robert goes off to see to that business, efficient if weary. Symon looked to Étienne. "Someone should've told m…me the date, I'd no idea. Or how long it takes from here. Is it really three days?"

Étienne eyes the things on the bed, gives Robert a empathetic look, and starts redoing his own load so as to have room for half a saddle bag of Symon's things. He is an efficient packer and careful to keep the weight distribution even. "I've never been, myself, so I didn't know how long it would take…. Do you think she will be very angry with you?"

Symon is efficient at nothing, it would appear. He doesn't seem to have even put a comb to his hair today. He shakes his head. "I've no idea. P-probably for several reasons. I don't really w…want to think about it." He looks Etienne over. "You're ready?"

Étienne folds the last of Symon's breaches into the top of his bag, selects a comb and steps behind Symon, "Stand still. You'll want your hair back if we're to be riding long and hard today. I'm ready. I've not nearly as much to pack…. just how pleased was she with you? Generally. Before this."

Symon squints one eye, but he lets Etienne take the comb to him. "W…we've b-been good friends, I think. W…we go to p-parties together, have fun…" He shrugs. "I don't really calculate m…my favor."

Étienne is efficient, but careful at unpicking the tangles without hurting, in a way that suggests he's likely done this before, perhaps for his sisters in a rush before a feast. "well, I had not much further to fall in her favor. Luckily, it is hard to stay angry at you. Let us hope that applies to disgruntled swans as well as men."

"W…well she can't b-be angry at /you/ for m…missing the time if, for one, she w…was rude to you about going and, for two, you'd have no w…way of knowing w-what you're supposed to b-be doing." That's meant to be a pep talk.

Étienne extracts a spare thong from his purse and ties back Symon's hair, fingers gentle despite the thick callouses. "I think she is angry at me for existing. You at least she likes…. You are lucky you are handsome, I think."

Symon laughs. "That can't b-be it," he says, then looks vaguely thoughtful. "Can it? No. You know, I spent w…weeks trying to talk to her, b-but she only b-bothered after w…we danced together the first time."

Étienne pats him on the shoulder and moves around the front to make sure his hair looks reasonable from all angles. "So maybe it is your dancing or conversation." He gives him a crooked smile, "Are you ready, do you think? I hope they give us good horses."

Symon smirks. "Conversation w…with m-me takes twice as long for the same amount said. I don't know if that m…makes it a b-bargain or a loss!" He shoulders the bag that's finally finished being prepared. "All right," he says, "w…w…we're off!"

Étienne gives him a wink, "I find you worth waiting for." He shoulders his own bag and follows his friend where he leads.

Symon looks just a little surprised to hear something so positive after recent difficulties, then flashes teeth in a smile. "Righto." Their horses have been sent already, with a boy to hold the reins until the nobles are astride. Symon passes his bags to the boy rather than attach them to the saddle himself, and the lad sets to getting them situated.

Étienne straps on his own bags and double checks all the straps and buckles, before mounting with the same grace he does most things, tipping the boy himself. It is unclear if he notices Symon's reaction. Perhaps a good night's sleep has restored the natural cheerfulness of the younger man, or the prospect of good hard exercise and possible adventure.

The stable boy makes a stirrup out of his hands to boost Symon onto the horse, as Symon is a less skilled rider. But once in the saddle, he seems to know more or less what to do. "Now…let's see. W…which way w-was it?"

Étienne eyes Symon, "Please tell me you know the way. I have seen maps, but I don't know this country at all otherwise."

"Oh no, w…we're alright," Symon claims. He pats at his clothes and draws out a map, which he passes to Étienne. "See? P…prepared. W…we just follow that." There is no concrete evidence that he knows how to read a map.

Étienne side eyes Symon and reads the map, carefully tracing the roads with a finger as if to memorize them. carefully he folds the map, and tucks it away himself, on the grounds that Étienne is the closest thing to a responsible party in this expedition. "Right. Ready to ride, Symon?"

Symon nods and nudges the horse in the sides to get it moving. In probably the right direction. "Ready. Cold to ride fast, b-but I suppose there's nothing for it, eh?"

Étienne flashes him a joyous grin and heads off at a trot, since one can't reasonably got faster in a city what with easily crushed pedestrians about.

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